|Hyatt Puts Efforts on Healthy Eating Worldwide.|
By Melanie Nayer ~ Weekly Exclusive Column
Wednesday, 23rd May 2012
Hyatt Hotels Corporation is the latest hotel company to jump on the healthy food option bandwagon, giving guests a new way to keep fit while traveling.
Hyatt's new concept - Food. Thoughtfully Sourced. Carefully Served. - will be implemented globally at Hyatt Hotels and focus on sourcing and providing food and beverage options that are good for "Hyatt guests and associates, good for the planet, and good for local communities."
With this new global food program, Hyatt ensures travelers have more options to fit their lifestyles while staying in Hyatt hotels. The Food. Thoughtfully Sourced. Carefully Served. program is focused on three pillars:
The first pillar is focused portion control, balanced offerings and natural ingredients prepared with nutrient preserving cooking techniques. The second pillar is focused on a healthy planet by implementing sustainable practices that will improve the long-term health of people and the planet. The final pillar is intended to support healthy communities by sourcing from local suppliers as well as sharing knowledge and actively supporting farmers’ markets and other community events.
Phase one began in mid-2011 and Hyatt just launched phase two, said Susan Santiago, vice president of food and beverage, North America operations, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts.
"While each pillar is currently defined by specific objectives, we are in the process of further expanding and refining each pillar and the 3, 5, 10 year plan from which we can measure our success," Santiago told me. "A key component of this journey will be launching this summer, as we will introduce a brand-new children’s menu that will encompass our three pillars."
While you won't see menus with calorie counts or fat grams, Santiago said that all servers and restaurant staff will be proficient in menu item nutrients, and that all room-service menus will also feature this new food concept.
In recent beta tests, the company found that 30% of Hyatt guests were willing to choose a healthier, more sustainable option such as cage-free eggs, all natural beef or sustainable seafood, even if it meant a higher price. Santiago wouldn't comment or give a direct response to questions about how menus will change, but she did say that "menus will feature additional portion controlled, balanced offerings." Does that mean smaller portions at higher prices? We'll have to wait for the menus to officially role out later this year.
In the meantime, Hyatt isn't holding anything back as part of this new healthy eating initiative. As part of Hyatt's commitment to Partnership for Healthier America, Hyatt will be expected to achieve the following goals:
Readers: What do you think? Are you interested in a new, healthier food options at hotels, even it means a higher-priced menu?
- By 2016, reduce the calorie footprint, sodium content and added sugar content, each by at least 10 percent across all food menus, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of U.S. Hyatt properties meeting this standard within three years;
- At least two healthy menu meal options will be equivalent to or lower in price than less healthy menu meal options. This pricing parity will appear on all menus by 2016, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of menus reflecting this change within three years.
Melanie Nayer is a hotel reviewer and expert on luxury travel around the world. She has covered all aspects of hotels including corporate restructures, re-branding initiatives, historical aspects and the best of the best in luxury hotels around the world.
Melanie writes a weekly exclusive column for 4Hoteliers.com